The important or impact of computer in Automobile industry

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INTRODUCTION

Over the past 30 years, ICT – in other words, electronic control devices, including the associated software has made significant innovations in automotive construction possible: from the anti-lock braking system in 1978 to electronic stability control in 1995 and emergency brake assist in 2010. In total, according to current estimates ICT contributes some 30 to 40 percent of total value added in automotive construction. At the same time, ICT architecture has also become more complex, and in multiple ways: because of the technologies employed, in terms of the functions performed, and in regard to the supply chain. Accordingly, ICT, and especially its software, has expanded significantly, from about 100 lines of program code (lines of code, LOC) in the 1970s to as much as ten million LOC.
The ICT infrastructure in an automobile of today a combination of embedded functions and infotainment systems has become a major prerequisite for optimized use and comfort. It plays a significant role in up to 80 percent of all innovations in the premium automotive segment, whether in engine control and electronic stability control or in driver assistance.
Additionally, regulatory requirements to reduce emissions and accidents would be inconceivable without ICT. Nevertheless, the use of ICT lags well behind the technical possibilities. Safety is achieved mainly by passive safety measures; proactive safety functions (such as emergency brake assist) that make heavy demands on ICT are treated with great wariness. “Drive by- wire” – in other words, steering vehicles without mechanical steering mechanisms – is also being pursued only hesitantly, because it’s associated requirements for the reliability of ICT. In other areas as well that offer great potential to help products stand apart from the crowd, such as infotainment or telematics, ICT architecture in cars has not been keeping pace with developments in other sectors.
The discrepancy between the role of ICT as an “enabling technology” and inhibitions about innovation is based mainly in the characteristics of today’s ICT.
Today, German premium vehicles have some 70 to 100 control devices. These are often developed for a problem-specific use, as structural units in control devices with associated sensors and actuators. The control devices are networked by way of a highly complex tree of cables, using multiple bus systems for example, for the engine chamber, chassis, passenger compartment and infotainment as well as different communication protocols, including LIN, CAN, FlexRay and MOST. The ICT architecture in vehicles today is molded by the car makers and their suppliers, rather than by its functionality.
Decades of evolution in ICT architecture that have neglected to revise it fundamentally, and thus to adapt it to its importance today, have had an unfortunate effect. The result has been that in today’s vehicles, ICT architecture is increasingly becoming a barrier to innovation.

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